Ukraine call TRANSCRIPT: 2/7/20, The 11th Hour with Brian Williams

Guests: Tom Steyer, Chris Coons, Michael Moore, Brittany Packnett Cunningham, Sam Seder, David Corn

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I truly believe we can build a better America. It`s going to take all of us but we can.

CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Senator Elizabeth Warren, thank you so much for your time tonight.

WARREN: Thank you.

HAYES: We are just getting started. Much more with our panel, more candidates and, yes, more of their great audience here in New Hampshire. Don`t go anywhere, we`ll be back in just 10 seconds.

Good evening from Manchester, New Hampshire. I`m Chris Hayes. We just saw the final Democratic debate before the state host the first primary of the 2020 presidential election. We`ve already heard from our audience and undecided New Hampshire voters. We hear from Democratic candidates live from the spin room. We`ve got more experts to help us breakdown what we saw tonight. But if you`re just joining us, after a strong showing by Pete Buttigieg in Iowa, the other Democrats on stage came after the South Bend Mayor.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think this going after every single thing that people do because it`s popular to say and makes you look like a cool newcomer, I just -- I don`t think that`s what people want right now. We have a newcomer in the White House and look where it got us.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: We`ve got a great group of folks to discuss here. My colleague MSNBC`s Lawrence O`Donnell, Alicia Menendez, Joy Reid and Chris Matthews. Give them a hand.

So we saw that those exchanges on Mayor Pete. I want to play this bit. This is number six on the shoot we have right. This is Bernie Sanders responding to the socialism question, which, Chris, you brought up earlier. It`s something that Amy Klobuchar brought up as well. This was how Sanders talked about it. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: President Trump only thinks this label socialism will work. At the State of the Union he said socialism destroys nations. He`s never going it let socialism destroy American health care. And before the Super Bowl, he joked with Sean Hannity about your honeymoon in Moscow. Those hits are going to keep coming if you`re the nominee. Why shouldn`t Democrats be worried?

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Because Donald Trump lies all the time. It doesn`t matter what Donald Trump says. It`s a sad state of affairs, it really is. He will say terrible things about Joey Hans (ph), ugly, disgusting things about Elizabeth and anybody else who is up here. But I think, George, that at the end of the day, the way we defeat Donald Trump -- and everybody up here, by the way is united. No matter who wins this darn thing, we`re going to stand together and defeat him.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Two things that were interesting, Lawrence, I thought about that answer. One, the sort of call for unity, which Sanders very clearly understands is a sort of imperative from -- coming from his lips in front of those big stages, right? He declined attacked Joe Biden, went to a surrogates, bet against him was read to him, he basically took a pass on it. He`s clearly very focused on that.

 And second of all, I mean, his sort of response to the socialism question is basically like, I don`t care what the guy says about me because you going to say ugly things about anyone. What do you think about that?

LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, "THE LAST WORD" HOST, MSNBC: Yes. He -- I`ve never heard him actually say this is how I will respond to that. He really just says, as you say, basically, I don`t care. He will be -- if he`s the nominee, he`ll be the first socialist nominee anyone`s ever seen. And so it`s very difficult thing to predict exactly how it would go. But it`s coming at a point in the curve of the understanding of that word that really has never been better.

This economy is filled with socialism. It`s filled with capitalism. Every economy in the world has a mix of capitalism and socialism and they vary. Sweden has more socialism than we do. North Korea has no capitalism. That`s the only place. Every other places of mixed economy, everybody knows that, I think everyone in this room knows that. So the word doesn`t scare people the way it did in the 1950s, 1960s.

And Bernie Sanders is one of the beneficiaries, and by the way, the guy who made that word less scary by embracing it and saying, I personally I`m not afraid of it. And so the word is living in a different environment now. And I can`t predict for you just how much of a liability that might or might not be.

ALICIA MENENDEZ, MSNBC ANCHOR: I do wonder if it is going to be scary to Venezuelans and to Cubans and Florida.

HAYES: There are a lot of Floridians who are very worried of that, yes.

MENENDEZ: I also, though, to your point about unity and about Sanders understanding how important it was for him to give that full call for unity. I also wondered if Pete Buttigieg does end up becoming the nominee. How then Sanders reconciles the attack he made tonight, which is to say there are two sides. I`m on one, the mayor is on the other. Now he`s the nominee, how he then does it turn about to support him.

O`DONNELL: They do it every time.

HAYES: Right, that`s the other thing. I mean --

O`DONNELL: This state remembers the phrase, voodoo economics.

HAYES: Yes, exactly.

O`DONNELL: The guy who accused his opponents of voodoo economics became that guy`s Vice President, OK? So, there`s nothing you can`t take back when it gets to the general.

HAYES: I want to play something that Vice President Joe Biden said tonight. Biden, of course, is in a, I think, somewhat tenuous situation in the arc of his campaign. He came in fourth in Iowa, he`s pulling at third or fourth year in New Hampshire. His campaign says, look, the first two states don`t matter that much and they`re not represented in the Democratic Party. But he went -- in number two, he talked about Mayor Buttigieg also because that clearly, I mean, if you look at the tracking polls in New Hampshire, it is a one for one trade that`s happening, literally between Joe Biden`s numbers and Pete Buttigieg`s numbers and so he went after him a bit tonight, take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why are Senator Sanders and Mayor Buttigieg to bigger risk for Democrats?

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, you know, you know that with regard, to just understand who`s the President wants very much to stick a label on every candidate, we`re going to not only have to win this time. We have to bring along United States Senate. And Bernie`s label himself, not me, a Democratic socialist. I think that`s the label that the President`s going to lay on.

Everyone running with Bernie if he`s the nominee, and Mayor Buttigieg is a great guy and a real patriot. He`s a mayor of a small city who has done some good things but has not demonstrated he has the ability to -- and will soon find out to get a broad scope of support across the spectrum, including African-Americans and Latinos.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Mayor Buttigieg briefly cloned himself there in that shot. The reason that I play that, Chris, because he didn`t really go after him, like -- and you can see that the staff is telling him, you got to do it. He`s got these things set up. He had something about the Recovery Act, but when it comes time to do it, he doesn`t really do.

CHRIS MATTHEWS, "HARDBALL" HOST, MSNBC: I can hear the same thing you hear, and I can only imagine. Today, we heard that Anita Hill who`s a smart Democratic media consultant --

HAYES: Anita Dunn.

MATTHEWS: Anita Dunn, rather. What did I say?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Anita Hill.

MATTHEWS: So maybe she`s good maybe a consultant --

HAYES: She is very smart but not a media consultant

MATTHEWS: I wouldn`t know but she`s often on my mind. I think that they made a decision for the first time in months and actually -- whenever Joe Biden decides to run for president, which was probably when he was 13, they did a Sunday show. They`ve agreed to do this Sunday show this week with George Stephanopoulos. Why all of a sudden they change. They`ve been basically hiding from the tough media questions. They think they catch people that are going to be nice to them, and they get tough questions from them, too, because everybody`s going to ask the obvious question about he and his son.

It does, you know, we ask why is your son got this job over here at x many millions of dollars. Why is -- when you got the portfolio for Ukraine, and then he gets the contract for Ukraine, people who have to remind us that to say, what`s going on here. It`s a reasonable question. I don`t think you should have asked the Ukraine President to investigate it, but it`s a reasonable question. When there`s smoke, people want to know if there`s fire.

But I think that the Democratic Party has to figure out its ideology. In Britain, we had the Liberal Party. I was in Guana (ph) beginning the last century with the Liberal Party, they were overtaken by this Socialist Party. Labor became the main thread, the main challenger, the Tories, Churchill went back to the Tories. We know that a lot of us know that history. A lot of us will be sorting things out, if the Democratic Party runs this socialist candidate. That`s a change from the Democratic Party.

The Democratic Party has been to the left to the Republican Party on the issue of mixed capitalism, more social programs. They put Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, enormously popular programs. I think, ACA Obamacare has also which that follow through with it, make it work. I think most Americans would be happy to have a public option and have Medicare fall through it.

But I don`t want to get into -- you know, I want every night -- and let the Democrats figure this out. I have my own views of the word socialist, and I`ll be glad to tell them, share them with you in private and they go back to the early 1950s. I have an attitude about them. I remember the Cold War, I have an attitude towards Castro. I believe that Castro and the Reds had won the Cold War. There were executions in Central Park and I might have been one of the ones getting executed and certain other people would be there cheering, OK?

So I have a problem with people took the other side. I don`t know who Bernie supports over these years. I don`t know what he means by socialism. One week it`s Denmark. We`re going to be like Denmark. OK, that`s harmless. That`s basically a capitalist country with a lot of good social welfare programs. Denmark is harmless.

HAYES: Pretty clearly in the Denmark category.

MATTHEWS: Is he?

HAYES: Yes.

MATTHEWS: Are you sure? How do you know? Did he tell you that?

HAYES: Well, I mean, that`s what he says and that`s what his agenda calls for, right?

MATTHEWS: Yes, yes, yes, yes. Well let`s see, let`s see, let`s figure that out.

JOY REID, MSNBC NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: But we haven`t seen a campaign yet where video of him praising the other verse --

HAYES: Right, and --

REID: Castro has been used. It will be used.

HAYES: That`s the question of how --

REID: You must see how that in place.

HAYES: -- what the effect that has -- I mean --

MATTHEWS: Well, what did you think of Castro? That`s a great question. What did you think of (INAUDIBLE). We all thought he was great when he first -- I`m going to cheer like mad for him when he first went in and then he became a communist and started shooting every one of his enemies.

HAYES: OK. Hold those thoughts on Cuban revolution. I have to go back to the spin room and Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang.

ANDREW YANG, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Hello New Hampshire.

HAYES: How you doing, Andrew? You had a moment tonight where you cited MLK`s support for universal basic income, which aligns with the sort of signature policy proposal. But you were sort of supporting it in a kind of -- as an alternative to, say, race conscious forms of redistribution. MLK, of course, himself thought both were necessary, right? He believed in affirmative action, he believed in racially conscious redistribution along with the universal base income. What do you say to people who say that any kind of universal basic income is not enough to redistribute or close the wealth gap or address all of those historical inequities?

YANG: I would agree with them 100 percent, Chris., that we need have a universal basic income, a freedom dividend as a foundation in floor. But then we need continue to build on top of it. I`m pro-affirmative action. I`m pro-tailored policies that are specifically trying to close the wealth gap that is getting bigger and bigger all the time, unfortunately.

HAYES: What was the thing that struck you most tonight in terms of the terrain that you got to cover that perhaps you hadn`t covered before?

YANG: I think the ABC folks talked about a lot of things we had talked about before, honestly. But I enjoyed the conversation and I appreciated the fact people are honing in on electability. The fact is the number one criteria that Democrats have for the nominee is defeating Donald Trump. And we need someone who`s going to appeal to Independents, Libertarians, Republicans, as well as Democrats and Progressives. I thought that theme came out loud and clear tonight.

HAYES: But do you think that you`re the most electable candidate in this race?

YANG: Well according to one study, 18 percent of college Republicans would choose me over the President, 10 percent of Donald Trump voters in New Hampshire, in one poll said they would choose me over the President. By the numbers, I am the best person to take on and defeat Donald Trump for the general election because I am drawing many of his supporters as well as Independents, Libertarians and people from all over the political spectrum.

HAYES: All right. Andrew Yang, we got to hit a break here. Thank you so much for making time tonight. I really appreciate it, sir.

I also want to thank my panel of MSNBC all stars. Give them a hand, Chris Matthews, Alicia Menendez, Joy Reid and Lawrence O`Donnell. Thank you all.

We have much more to come here from the Granite State first in the nation with these wonderful voters. We`re going to talk some of them right after we come back. Don`t go anywhere.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Here we have a situation where the world -- one of the most volatile places of the world has just become more dangerous at the hands of a President who has no regard for the military, not only punishing a war hero today with what he did to Colonel Vindman, but pardoning war criminals in a way that undermines the entire sense of good order and discipline and military honor. We deserve a better commander and chief.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Former South Bend, Indiana Mayor, Pete Buttigieg. Mayor Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar had some tough words about your experience and she also said something I want to get your response to because I don`t think you got a chance to respond. She said, you know, your attacks on the people up there who do have Washington experience, she said was to kind of be one of the cool kids and there was something kind of distancing and condescending about it that you were belittling the work of people that were actually doing very difficult work in Washington D.C., sitting through the impeachment trial. What`s your response to that?

BUTTIGIEG: Look, I understand the importance and the difficulty of the work that the senator and others are doing in Washington. My point is there is frustration with Washington as a whole and we`re going to need a different mindset in order to win and in order to govern. Look, we`re coming up on a situation where the future president is going to face issues that are fundamentally and profoundly different than anything we`re used to, on top of the conventional and traditional issues of security and in our economy.

And one thing that I am seeing across the country, certainly in New Hampshire, when I speak to Democrats, but also when I speak to Independents, who will hold part of the key to defeating Donald Trump is a desire to make sure that we finally turn the page, leave the politics of the past in the past and bring something different to Washington.

HAYES: There`s a sort of consensus, I think, they`re both up on the stage and among the voters, we talked about electability being at the front of people`s minds. And so -- and I`ve heard you make your case, but I want to ask for someone who was two-term mayor of a town last year won election -- won your last election with 8,600 votes, ran state wide and got walloped. Why should someone think that you are more electable, more palatable to voters and someone like say say, Amy Klobuchar who`s won successive statewide races in a pretty close state in the Midwest?

BUTTIGIEG: Well the process of actually proving it is underway. We just had an election on Monday. We`re about to have another one this coming Tuesday. And so after a year of each candidates trying to tell how each of us will get votes in a residential election, this is the first chance to actually show it. And we have the support that we have because of our approach. But I also recognize New Hampshire is an independent-thinking state full of folks who aren`t going to be told what to do by Iowa or anything else. And I know that I`ve got to come out here and earn that support as we go on to Tuesday and then beyond.

HAYES: If you weren`t running for president, or if you don`t end up as a nominee, the president, you`ve -- you were obviously quite young. You have had a successful career as mayor in South Bend. Could you win a statewide race in your home state of Indiana?

BUTTIGIEG: Depends on the race and depends on the year. Look, I don`t go looking for offices to run for. Every time I`ve decided to run for an office, including this one, and every time I`ve decided to not run for an office, it`s been a process. It`s about looking for what`s needed in a particular office and then wondering if I have something unique to offer, sizing that up and lining it up. And what I`m seeing right now is a presidency that requires a new approach.

I see a situation room that would benefit from a commander in chief who`s worn the uniform. I see a party that is struggling to connect with communities in the so called Rust Belt, like the one where I let it turn around in Sound Bend. And I believe that both in order to win and in order to govern, what I have to offer is just different and is what it`s going to take.

HAYES: You had strong words about the President`s pardoning of war criminals tonight, and I don`t think I had heard that mentioned on the trail before or in the debates even, the President is planning according to reports to campaign with some of the men that he pardoned. What kind of message you think that sends?

BUTTIGIEG: It`s a gut punch to those who serve honorably. Not only that, it actually plays into one of the worst things that is said about those who have served in conflict, which is the idea that everybody who`s ever been in a conflict zone in uniform is somehow involved in in war crimes and harming civilians. The military has very clear laws on the difference between being sent into combat, being sent into those situations and committing a war crime. And for the President to throw out military justice is an insult to the military itself. It plays into the idea that there`s no difference between a war fighter and a war criminal. And folks in the military are not happy about it.

HAYES: On the question of health care policy, which people have gone around and around and around on but, you know, there`s a critique that you`ve offered and others have offered of Medicare for All as proposed by Warren and Senator Sanders. But isn`t the case that there aren`t the votes to even pass what you would want to pass anyway?

BUTTIGIEG: Well, here`s the good news. Even compared to what President Obama had to work with a decade ago, there`s a historic majority of Americans that wants to see this happen. Now, of course, the problem we`re living through is a majority among the American people can`t quite seem to get any action among the American Senate. And that is why we need presidential leadership ready to engage that majority. And that`s why I`m so focused on a politics of belonging that holds that majority together.

But most Americans, even in conservative states think we ought to raise taxes on corporations in the wealthy, and use that to pay for better investments in our infrastructure, education, and health. Most Americans are demanding we do something about gun violence, expecting we do something about climate change, and you can only defy your own voters for so long. That`s why I think the best use of the big blue and white airplane that comes with the Oval Office is not to fly it among golf courses with your name on it, but to take it into the backyard of a member of the Senate who is defying not only what would be my White House but their own voters in refusing to act on these things.

And that is the uniqueness of our moment here in 2020. Again, compared to even a few years ago, is we have an American majority hungry for action, ready to go. We have a responsibility to galvanize and not polarized that majority to make sure that even this bad faith Senate can`t ignore the American people anymore.

HAYES: All right. Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana. Thank you much, sir.

BUTTIGIEG: Good to be with you. Thank you.

HAYES: I want to get some more feedback from the crowd here. Get my stick microphone. I`m going to come to you. Hi, how are you?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Good, how are you?

HAYES: Are you a New Hampshire voter?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am.

HAYES: Are you undecided?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am.

HAYES: So what did you think of tonight`s debate?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was grateful that they talked about democracy reform. They talked about public funding and overturning citizens united and voting rights. I feel like that`s the first time I`ve heard them really talk about those structural changes and I -- in order to get anything done, we need to fix the structure of democracy.

HAYES: Although I didn`t notice at one point tonight, Joe Biden was, you know, going after Bernie Sanders for the impossibility of Medicare for All or the political will, which is a legitimate attack. But then he sort of mentioned in passing, like, we`re going to get a constitutional amendment to overturn citizens united, which is a good idea, but also pretty tough.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is tough, but I think in order -- we need politicians willing to lead to fix democracy first and to pledge to do that as the first thing that they`ll do.

HAYES: Did you find yourself being kind of tipped in one way or the other tonight?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I did think Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren did a great job as the two female candidates on the stage but I, you know, I have had a chance as a New Hampshire voter to meet all of the candidates and, you know, I still want to hear more about their --

HAYES: Come on, want to hear more. You guys are insane up here.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have a 10-year old daughter who`s met most of them too.

HAYES: All right. Next year or next four years are doing Bronx primaries, OK. We`re the first in the nation, the Bronx. What did you think of Mayor Pete`s back and forth me just now?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am deeply concerned about how much money he`s taking from billionaires. And it`s a legitimate concern. He does want to fix our democracy and pass policies like H.R.1, but I just don`t know how you can do that while playing the game that we`re in.

HAYES: So you -- that line of attack the fact that he has been fundraising from super rich donors, that really matters to you?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It does.

HAYES: All right. Well, thank you very much. I appreciate it.

We are here in Manchester, New Hampshire, where literally every person in this room has met every candidate 57 times and they`re still undecided. And we`re going to come back with some more, don`t go anywhere.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TOM STEYER, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The question is who can go toe to toe with Mr. Trump? Who can take down Mr. Trump because he`s the real threat to the country? And let me say, you have to have experienced to take him down. This is not a question of he`s a nice guy who`s going to listen, we need people with experience. That`s why I`m worried about Mayor Pete.

You need to be able to go toe to toe with this guy and take him down on the debate stage or we`re going to lose. And that`s actually the issue in front of Democratic voters. I have heard this debate so many darn times and I love all these people, and they`re all right. We can, if we win, we can get the right thing, Bernie. I am with you.

If we win, we can get the right thing Pete and Amy, but we got a win or we are in deep trouble and we keep not talking about the facts, Mayor Pete.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Here to talk about his night of candidacy, Democratic candidate for president, businessman, Tom Steyer.

Mr. Steyer, I notice in that clip we just played you talk about your concern about experience, vis-a-vis Pete Buttigieg is a two-term mayor of a -- of a college town (ph) Indiana. Why should anyone think that you have the experience, given you`ve never won elected office in your life to be the person that defeats Donald Trump?

TOM STEYER (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, Chris, what I`m saying is Donald Trump is running on the economy. He took out a full-page ad in the Manchester Union Letter, I don`t know if you saw it. Which is half was touting how he good is on the economy and the other half was saying how lousy Democrats are on the economy. So we know that`s where he`s running on. And if we can`t beat him on that, if the candidate can`t go to toe-to- toe with him and doesn`t have the experience and expertise to take him down, he can win.

And I spent 30 years building a business. That business could not have succeeded if I didn`t understand job creation, prosperity and growth. Everybody on the Democratic side gets economic justice, we`ve all got it. He doesn`t have a clue about economic justice. But he`s going to try and make this about jobs and growth. And if we can`t beat him on that, it`s the economy stupid. He can win. And I`m the person -- I`m worried Pete Buttigieg has a couple of years with McKinsey. That does not give you the ability to take down Donald Trump. He`s a liar.

When he talks about growth, all the money is going to rich people. When he talks about jobs, you can`t live on the jobs. Every single one of the thing he say is baloney. But you got to be able to take him down real time, you can`t be intimidated and you`ve got to actually know what you`re talking about. So the further he goes, the further you can go and show that he`s -- what he`s always been. He`s a fraud as a businessman, he`s a failure as a president and he`s lying both times and that`s what it`s going to take.

HAYES: There are few questions tonight about Mike Bloomberg who is in the race but is not competing in the early states. He spent, I think, $160 million. I think you spent around $100 million in television advertising. And there`s been complaints from people over that stage, if there`s something fundamentally unjust and inequitable and skewed about having individuals with vast personal fortunes coming into the race, spending that and being able do you get on the debate stage, bump their numbers up in polls that it skewed essentially the fundamental basics of the Democratic nominated process. What do you say to that?

STEYER: Look, Chris, this nomination is going to be won or lost based on message. Do you have something differential to and important to say to the American people? And can they trust you to represent them and actually do the things you`re promising to do? And so, when I look at Mayor Bloomberg, he`s going to win or lose based on what he has to say and whether people can look at his record. I`m a straight up progressive. I`m running to break the corporate strangle hold on the government and I have 10 years-plus fighting corporations and never losing to them.

I`m the person who said climate is my number one priority. I`m the only person who will stay it and I`m the person that goes after it from the standpoint of environmental justice and more than 4.5 million jobs created every year, good paying union jobs. And I`m the person who take down Mr. Trump on the economy. I have a message, Chris. I -- that is what will make me win or lose that -- is what will make Mr. Bloomberg win or lose.

And yes, that, you know me. I -- this is what did on impeachment, this is what I`ve done for over a decade. When I see something wrong, I go after it, full bore as hard as I can, including putting in money to try and do the most important things in America. That`s what`s I`m doing now. And if that`s the worst thing I ever do, I`ll be OK.

HAYES: All right, Tom Steyer, thank you so much for joining us.

(CROSSTALK)

HAYES: So Vice President Joe Biden won`t be joining us here tonight. We do have someone here to speak in his behalf, the man who sits in Biden`s former Senate seat, Senator Chris Coons, Democrat from Delaware.

How are you, Senator?

SEN. CHRIS COONS (D-DE): Thank you again (INAUDIBLE).

HAYES: Have a seat.

COONS: Thank you.

HAYES: We`re very close here. You were -- so, you`re sort of campaigning on Joe Biden`s behalf?

COONS: Just a little bit.

HAYES: I want to ask -- I hate asking people in the context of campaigns. There`s a trop that happens, where you like you ask a candidate why aren`t you polling better? And the candidate is like, I don`t know, I`m just -- what do you want me to say, I`m just trying to get peoples vote. But I do think that part of the vice president`s pitch is electability, that his head to head polling numbers against Trump have been fairly good.

COONS: Yes.

HAYES: That Trump is scared of him, hence the actions for which he was impeached.

COONS: The last two weeks of jury duty I finished, yes.

HAYES: And yet, there`s also the case that, you know, there is a little bit of proof in the pudding, right? That if you -- if voters who get the most exposure in this early states come away thinking, I don`t know how good that guy is on the trail, I don`t know how ready he is to take on Trump, that that hurts the case. What do you say though -- to say that?

COONS: Well Chris, let`s see where we are after the first four contests. I think it`s important that we sort of reserve judgment. I think what you saw on the stage tonight was Joe Biden the fighter. Joe Biden, who`s been knocked down by life several times, hard, and always gets up and knows what it means to stand with people who get up and go to work and make a difference in their communities and move forward with their lives despite really hard things that have happened to them.

You saw a fighter on the stage tonight. And as we go through the next three primaries, the very first early ones, we`ll move to states that are more representative, no disrespect, than Iowa and New Hampshire where he has consistently done better and poled better. And frankly, once we get through those four and move to Super Tuesday, I think we`ll then much better representation of who`s really best position to mobilize America, to engage folks, to bridge some of the divides in our country that Trump has crack open wider and then they confront Donald Trump on the stage.

I think that Joe Biden you saw on this stage tonight is ready for that fight and ready to win.

HAYES: Something I`ve heard from some people I`ve talked to and these are people who like Joe Biden, who are have affection for him and admiration for him. They say that, you know, that what the president did in terms of Ukraine was --

COONS: Wrong.

HAYES: -- outrageous and wrong and he deserved to be impeached. But also I`m just worried there`s this thing out there and now he`s created all this disinformation that attached to Joe Biden. And I worry that the way that Fox News operates this is going to like have its effect.

COONS: Right.

HAYES: What`s your response to that?

COONS: As we heard on the debate stage, I think it was Pete who said this first, frankly, Donald Trump will makeup something to attack whoever is our nominee.

HAYES: Yes.

COONS: Right? He`s got slanders, he`s got nicknames, he`s got lies. I think most of you remember when he famously made up an attack on Senator Ted Cruz that his father have been involved in assassinating JFK. Whoever we put up, they will swift vote, they will go after. Remember it was in New Hampshire that our party decided we`re going to put up John Kerry because he`s a war hero, against George Bush.

HAYES: Yes.

COONS: And that they figured out a way to attack him for not really being a war hero. So I frankly would let that make up your mind. I would look at who`s got the heart and the compassion to connect. Who do average Americans look at and say, yes, he knows me? Who`s got the experience to actually put us on the world stage as the leader that can solve climate collectively, that can solve some of our big issues globally. And who has the experience to pick a great running mate, a great cabinet and then move forward. I think that`s Joe.

HAYES: Final question for you. You know, Senator, Vice President Biden came up in a Senate that was very different from this senate. I mean he was a senator from the time he was 35 years old. The constitution eligible --

COONS: Twenty-nine years old.

HAYES: Yes, 29 -- I`m sorry 29 years old. That`s right 29 and then he sworn after 30. And, you know, he serve with this sort of old segregationist senators, he served through the 1980s and `90s.

COONS: Yes.

HAYES: There`s a critique of him that he essentially has a model of how the Senate works that`s dated. And he`s a model the way that government works that`s dated.

COONS: Right.

HAYES: That his keeps thinking of the times of deal making that doesn`t exist anymore.

COONS: Clearly that`s wrong. Because, yes, Joe Biden has been 36 yeas in the Senate, he chaired the Judiciary Committee, chaired the Foreign Relations Committee. He has a lot of experience. But he went with Barack Obama to the White House and as vice president, he went back up to the Hill and fought hammer and tongs for some of the biggest things they got done, whether it was on health care or climate change or the Recovery Act, he knows Mitch McConnell. He knows exactly what Mitch McConnell di to shut down Barack Obama`s agenda. And he, better than anyone, understands what it`s going to take to win and what`s posable to get done in the Senate.

Yes, he was part of the Senate of 30 or 40 years ago. He fought the fights that are literally relevant today. So when I hear Mayor Pete say, oh these are completely new challenges, no, no, the challenges that we face in 2020, are the challenges we face in 2016. And we need someone who understands how to fight and win. Last, he crisscross the country in 2018 and campaigned for dozens and dozens of candidates. He will do a better job of helping us win back the Senate than any other candidate the top of the ticket.

HAYES: Delaware Senator Chris Coons, good to have you here. Thank you very much.

(CROSSTALK)

HAYES: We`ve got another panel coming together discuss as well as Michael Moore, coming up. Don`t go anywhere.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Democratic Party`s last presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton has criticized Senator Bernie Sanders` record in the Senate saying nobody likes him, nobody wants to work with him. He got nothing done.

Senator Klobuchar, you served with Senator Sanders in the Senate. Is he going to be able to get the support? Not if you like it, but is he going to be able to get the support that he needs from Republicans?

AMY KLOBUCHAR, SENATOR: OK. I like Bernie just fine.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: All right. We`re not go having to a chance to speak to Senator Bernie Sanders tonight. One of his surrogates is here, Michael Moore, Oscar-winning filmmaker. Great to have you here, Michael.

MICHAEL MOORE, FILMMAKER: I`m very glad to be here and what a great room of people here. This is really wonderful.

HAYES: So I want to ask, this came up several times in the debate and it`s come up with people I`ve talked to. It`s interesting. There is a huge generational divide on this question on the socialism word, right? Not just how people feel about it as a first order question but how they worry other people will feel about it because that`s really the worry, right?

MOORE: Yes.

HAYES: The worry is he will nominated and they`ll drop a billion dollars, literally a billion dollars of advertising on his head telling everyone in America, they guy is a socialist and he loves Castro and he love -- you know, and that will, that will really hurt. What do you think -- how do you respond to that?

MOORE: Well, first of all, he does love Julian Castro. That is true. The -- listen, I hope they do do that because what it will really remind people and what I`ll be and Bernie will be and others will be reminding people the last time in this past century, when we had to fight fascism, bigotry, white supremacy and all that, it took a Democratic Socialist, Franklin Delano Roosevelt to defeat that and to stand up and give us the things --

HAYES: Oh he didn`t call himself that, just to be clear.

MOORE: Although that term didn`t exist then, just like --

HAYES: OK.

MOORE: No, it didn`t just like there`s thing from 1972 that Bernie wrote this op-ed saying that there should be no law discriminating against anybody who`s in love with somebody of the same gender. The word gay rights did not exist three years after Stonewall.

This is why Bernie is always been ahead of the curve. And this particular issue, the idea of Democratic socialism is simply the first shall be last and the last shall be first. And the rich man will have a harder time getting into heaven than a camel will have getting through the eye of a needle.

That was another famous Democratic socialist before the term was invented. But here`s really the choice in front of us this year. The Democratic Party -- do we want the Democratic Party and the Democrat that`s on the ballot? Do we want somebody who is going to be of -- essentially a President like FDR? Or, do we want the Democratic Party of Goldman Sachs? That`s our choice.

We don`t want Goldman Sachs. This is the wrong way to go. It is not -- and playing it safe -- whenever we played it safe, we lose. Mondale, Dukakis, Kerry, Gore --

HAYES: McGovern.

MOORE: No, that`s back too far.

HAYES: OK.

MOORE: Nobody would --

HAYES: I see, you cut off the example. And --

MOORE: Well, no, from the `80s on.

HAYES: Right, right, right.

MOORE: Yes, but there`s -- yes. No, no, we lose, we lose when we go safe and bland.

HAYES: Well, but here -- let me ask you this.

MOORE: We win when we take a risk and nominate somebody whose middle name is Hussein.

HAYES: Right.

MOORE: That`s when we win. When everybody goes, oh my god, I like him, I like Obama but -- and you start thinking of who these people are that you`re trying to please.

HAYES: Right.

MOORE: It`s your conservative brother-in-law at the Thanksgiving table. Stop worrying about him.

HAYES: Right.

MOORE: We need to bring out the 100 million Americans who do not vote. If we can convince just two million of them to come out, we will have the White House.

HAYES: OK. So then that segues to my other -- the other question I have which is about, you know, part of the Sanders` proposition for electability is precisely that organizing, right, bringing out new voters, turning people out.

You know, the first pilot runway that was Iowa. The turnout was roughly the same as 2016, a lot of people thought it would be much, much higher and it wasn`t. The percentage of first time caucus goers was down slightly. It just seems to me that as the test of the Sanders thesis, the number in Iowa don`t necessarily bear out the theory.

MOORE: Well, I was in Iowa two weeks campaigning with Bernie. It was very clear to me that the American people are in a malaise. There is a despair across the country. And I saw that. It wasn`t so much of who was running this year.

HAYES: Yes.

MOORE: It was after three years of Donald J. Trump, people are very -- too many people have kind of given up and I don`t want them to give up.

HAYES: No.

MOORE: I don`t want them to give up at all. And then when they hear the thing about socialism, I want them to think that the biggest socialist we have in this country is Donald Trump. He believes in socialism for the rich. Tax breaks for the rich, socialism, giving free stuff to corporations. Tax breaks for corporations. All this --

HAYES: They handed out $30 million in -- money to big agribusiness.

MOORE: Yes. That is --

HAYES: By themselves.

MOORE: That`s socialism for the wealthy. They love socialism, the people who got the money. They want more money for themselves to spread, to redistribute. They believe in redistribution. They like to distribute our money and give it to large corporations, agribusiness. We`re down the whole list.

It`s -- I`m telling you, my friend, it`s like I want this debate. I want this. So does Bernie. You want a fighter. You -- that is Bernie. He will not relent. He can`t be bought. He will not sellout. And I just want to say too, this debate tonight, I really enjoyed it.

HAYES: I did too.

MOORE: I clapped, I think, for each candidate. Every candidate said something great.

HAYES: Yes.

MOORE: You know, what they said about war and peace, what Tom Steyer said about race, but -- they were all -- and even -- and Amy Klobuchar, you`ve got to love her.

HAYES: She had a wonderful night, yes.

MOORE: Because she also is just honest.

HAYES: Yes.

MOORE: Well, you see, that`s the real deal. She`s not trying to fake an answer and pander to you. She`s going to say what she says. And when she said that to Pete Buttigieg about you said that you were bored with the trial that you`d rather watch cartoons, and then the camera cut to him and like a cartoon character he raised his hand like this. I`m like, woah, don`t do that.

HAYES: Like I did.

MOORE: But it was really -- he really saw how kind of -- you know, look it didn`t get said tonight. Let me -- I`m sorry to take -- but let`s have a round of applause for the fact that we have maybe a tie for first. I think, you know, Bernie won the popular vote. But we had a game man in the United States of America won a primary, a tie --

HAYES: Tie.

MOORE: A primary and --

HAYES: Along with Bernie Sanders.

MOORE: -- this is a great moment.

HAYES: Michael Moore, thank you very much.

MOORE: Thank you.

HAYES: We got some of the other friends stopping by in just a minute, don`t go anywhere.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: We are back here live in Manchester, New Hampshire. I`ve got with me here, Brittany Packnett Cunningham, co-host of Pod Save the People. Sam Seder, host of Majority Report and David Corn, Washington Bureau Chief at Mother Jones.

You know, we were just speaking before we went on the air that it was, again, I thought it was a very good debate and very substantive. And there were the moments where people went at each other that were clearly kind of teed up, but nothing really past that.

BRITTANY PACKNETT CUNNINGHAM, CO-HOST, POD SAVE THE PEOPLE: Yes, it felt like a little bit like they sang kumbaya before they came out onstage, which frankly I think a lot of us were pleased to see.

HAYES: Right, exactly, because they are trying to appeal to the Democratic voter who is super nervous about too much fighting.

SAM SEDER, HOST, MAJORITY REPORT: You know, I`m not convinced of that. I mean, honestly, I don`t get the sense that when people talk about the Iowa numbers, people not coming out, Bernie got big, big numbers on youth. Like they beat 2008. But I think there`s a lot of Democratic voters whose attitude is like, pick somebody.

HAYES: Yes, totally. Let me know when you`ve got a nominee.

SEDER: I`m not so invested in this.

HAYES: Yes.

SEDER: I want somebody to run against, and I don`t know who.

HAYES: And in fact, I`ll do you one more than that. I think there are people that feel a feeling of dread triggered by the primary. They want to get past it because once the decision`s been made, they don`t have to make a decision anymore.

SEDER: Yes.

HAYES: They don`t have to deal with this. They feel like they`re being given an exam they don`t know the answer to, which is like who is the most electable? It`s like I don`t frickin` know. Why are you asking me? I`m just know who going to be president. I know the things I believe in. Why you`re asking me who`s electable.

DAVID CORN, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, MOTHER JONES: You were talking earlier in the hour, and I met people like this too in the last couple days. Well, who are you considering? Well, Warren, Buttigieg, Steyer, and maybe Klobuchar.

CUNNINGHAM: And Michelle Obama and Oprah and all of them.

CORN: It`s like what do you want to eat for breakfast?

SEDER: Right.

CORN: You can have steak, chicken, eggs, cereal, oranges. How do you decide?

HAYES: Yes.

CORN: And what we have now is we don`t have lanes. People talked about lanes. There`s the moderate lane and the progressive lane. When I talk to voters, they`re -- what they`re looking for is outside any lane. They want who they think can win, who they feel connected to, particularly in New Hampshire, someone who carried their groceries in for them.

HAYES: Right.

CONR: You know, it could be any of that stuff, and they all are kind of -- kind of acceptable. I don`t see anybody hating, any voters hating these choices.

CUNNINGHAM: I don`t know that I would wholeheartedly agree with that.

CORN: Who do you hate? Who do you hate?

CUNNINGHAM: I`m not saying I hate, but I think there`s something really important that we have to make sure is in the conversation because part of the dread that people are feeling is a worry about whether or not they can actually trust this electoral process, after everything that happened in Iowa and the ways in which people were continuously disenfranchised in 2016, in 2018. People are dreading going to the ballot box and all of that effort, all of this conversation, all of these debates being for absolute naught.

I`m very, very glad that Amy Klobuchar finally mentioned voting rights on this debate stage because frankly it doesn`t matter who carries your groceries to the car if we do not get that part right.

CORN: And let the security and I have to say, you know, I wrote a book about this. I care about it a lot. But we just don`t even have, even in the aftermath of this impeachment, which had to do early started with the Russia scandal and attacking the last election, we still don`t have too many of the Democrats when they have a high profile debate like tonight talking about what needs to be done to make sure we have a fair election at home and in terms of foreign intervention.

CUNNINGHAM: Yes. And to be fair, right, I mean, people of color in this country have never actually --

CORN: That`s right.

SEDER: Yes.

CUNNINGHAM: -- tried (ph) a fair election. So we`ve been talking about this for a very long time.

CORN: We share your pain now.

CUNNINGHAM: We`ve been talking about this for a very long time, and there is a question. You know, they talked about the fact that somebody shouldn`t be able to pay their way onto that stage. But there are -- there is one thing that Tom Steyer and Michael Bloomberg could pay for with the billions of dollars they have. It`s the fines, fees and restitutions that are standing in between a million Floridians and the ballot box. That`s a choice.

HAYES: I agree. I don`t understand how no one has written that check. You can write that check.

CUNNINGHAM: That`s a choice that they can make if you`re really committed to our democracy.

SEDER: Bloomberg wouldn`t notice it was missing.

CORN: That`s true.

SEDER: Can I just one thing that Chris Coons said when he was talking to you struck me, because I was thinking about during the course of the debate which is in 2004, you remember this -- we remember this election quite well. They swift voted a guy who literally had a medal from --

HAYES: And who was literally nominated precisely on the exact same thinking now --

CUNNINGHAM: Yes.

HAYES: -- of who can go up against Trump in the time -- Bush in time of war? Oh, the war hero. Let`s nominate the war hero.

SEDER: And Bush had some very strong weaknesses on that.

HAYES: Yes.

SEDER: And it occurred to me tonight that to the extent anybody laid any punches on anybody it was on Pete Buttigieg, it seemed to me. And a lot of came at him. You know, he was talking about I`m going to get up there and talk to Donald Trump about, you know, my relationship or our relationship to God and the relationship to service. And he had one other element that where he was from.

And I think, you know, one of the mistakes that I think Democratic voters tend to make, they want to fall in love with somebody. And I think Donald Trump has a playing court. He has a court, right? And that court is individual bona fides.

Hillary Clinton was probably the most qualified president --

HASY: Whoever run, right?

SEDER: -- we have ever had.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

SEDER: I mean politics, I had some issues.

HAYES: Right.

SEDER: But in terms of a resume, but because she fought on that terrain, he`s a horrible person, which I think everybody here would agree. And -- but as soon as you take him onto that court, he has an advantage because he has no shame.

The candidate I think that`s going to win is going to come up there with a policy set that is going to ignore what he says personally and is going to move forward. And I think that`s what occurred to me when I heard about that swift voting.

HAYES: You know, that connects to something that was interesting to me about the state of the union response which happened this week, which is Gretchen Whitmer got up there and it was just like -- it was just like this very kitchen table kind of laundry list kind of elder care and things like that. At some level, you feel like, no, but did you hear what that guy did? What are you talking about elder care? Like did you see what that -- but it`s like no, no actually. That`s what -- that is -- the message has to be.

CUNNINGHAM: It does.

CORN: But this is the question.

HAYES: Listen to question. Yes, I don`t know what the answer.

CORN: Can normal beat abnormal?

HAYES: That`s right.

CORN: We don`t know. Hillary couldn`t figure out how to do it. And if you bring Bernie into the equations, it`s all the question --

HAYES: It`s not normal, abnormal.

CORN: It`s policy versus personality.

HAYES: Exactly.

CUNNINGHAM: Reality TV.

HAYES: No, like literally can you attack him on he wants to cut Medicaid, and either cutting Medicaid --

CUNNINGHAM: Yes.

HAYES: -- right now and he gave a lot of money into rich, or is it just so impossible in the maelstrom of his message --

CORN: That`s right.

HAYES: -- that you can`t quite that.

(CROSSTALK)

SEDER: If you can`t cut through the chaos with just policy, you`re not going to be able to cut through the chaos because he`s going to beat you when it comes to throwing mud as a person.

CUNNINGHAM: So I don`t believe in trying to join him at the -- on the floor where he is, right, or pass the floor as it were. I fully believe in the fact that we can energize people by cutting through that noise and making sure we put up somebody not just with a policy package but with the temperament to be able to stand up next to a bully and speak to us anyway.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, that`s --

CUNNINGHAM: I think that in particular the two women on the stage tonight did that.

HAYES: Dave.

CORN: Yes. Like Chris, I`ve written and reported on policy forever. But at the end of the day, it`s still one person versus another person. That`s how it works.

HAYES: Brittany Packnett Cunningham, Sam Seder, David Corn, thank you so much for being here.

That does it for us tonight live in Manchester, New Hampshire. This was so much fun. We`re going to do it again soon. Thanks, everybody here.

To all our undecided voters, I hope you make up your mind by Tuesday. We will be back here live on Monday at 8:00. Good night, everybody.

 

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.                                                                                                     END